“Dancing is the loftiest, the most moving, the most beautiful of the arts, because it is not mere translation or abstraction from life; it is life itself.” –Havelock Ellis
Jill Cates is a graduate of Cypress Springs High School where she began her enjoyable, passionate, and determined career in dance. Upon graduation she traveled to Kilgore, Texas where she was part of the World Famous Kilgore College Rangerettes Drill Team. After attending Kilgore College and obtaining an Associates of Arts Degree she transferred to Texas State University, San Marcos.
At Texas State Jill graduated Summa Cum Laude, receiving a Bachelors of Arts in Psychology, a Bachelors of Science in Dance, and Certification for Secondary Education in Dance. In December 2010, Jill completed coursework and graduated from Lamar University with a Master’s in Education Administration, and soon hopes to receive her Principal Certification.
This will mark the sixth year Jill has taught at Cy Ridge. She is excited to continue to share her passion for life and dance with such motivating students at Cypress Ridge and hopes to encourage the importance of maintaining a strong character, a grateful attitude, and a servant’s heart towards the everyday obstacles.
Married to her high school sweet-heart Paul Cates and expecting her first baby girl, Maisey, in November 2014, Jill also enjoys creating family traditions, decorating, volunteering and hosting any special event that comes her way!
Talia Dudley is a graduate of Langham Creek High School and has been training in dance for over 20 years with emphasis in ballet, tap, jazz, lyrical, and hip hop. She trained and competed with The Dance Factory in Houston since age 5. During this time, she traveled with other Dance Factory company members to Austria, Germany, and Italy to perform at the Tanzsommer dance gala. While attending high school at Langham Creek, Talia served as a Lieutenant her junior year and a Senior Lieutenant her senior year on the national champion Bailadoras drill team and officer line. Upon graduation, she moved to College Station to attend Texas A&M University (WHOOP!) and was a 4 year member of the Texas Aggie Dance Team, where she served as a Co-Captain her junior year and Captain her senior year. She graduated from Texas A&M University in May 2011 with a Bachelor of Business Administration in Marketing. During her time at Texas A&M, she came back several times a year to teach and choreograph for the Cy Ridge Dazzlers, and she always enjoyed coming back each year. In summer 2012, she obtained her certification for secondary education in dance and PE.
She continues to teach, choreograph, and judge tryouts for several studios, soloists, and drill teams throughout the state of Texas, and she feels blessed to be a part of the Cypress Ridge Dazzler family as the Assistant Director.
Talia is married to her high school sweet-heart, Michael Dudley, and they are expecting their first son, Parker, in November 2016. She has a passion for dancing and teaching, enjoys going out for sushi with Michael, working out, watching sports, and loves all things Texas A&M! She is very excited share her passion for dancing with the Dazzlers and dance students at Cy Ridge.